Students, faculty busted for misuse of placards

Micah Flores

Teamed up and fanned out across at least a dozen campus parking lot locations on Tuesday, several armed DMV investigators and CSUN police officers were busy citing 24 students and faculty members accused of misusing Disabled Person Parking Placards, according to a DMV spokesman.

DMV investigators are sworn officers who conduct criminal, administrative and civil proceedings – including misrepresentation of placards. The joint enforcement sting was conducted at the request of CSUN’s police department.

The students and faculty who were targeted showed no signs of disabilities. This led investigators and CSUN cops to believe the placards “had been illegally lent out by friends or family members,” said DMV spokesman Mike Miller in a phone interview.

Legitimate medical personnel must approve disabled parking placards, according to the DMV.

During the operation, 106 able-bodied individuals were questioned outside of their vehicles, Miller said.

“Twenty-four of those 106 were unauthorized to park in the spaces,” he said. “That’s 23 percent who were in violation.”

All 24 placards were confiscated.

In order to expedite the day-long sting, investigators radioed placard information to DMV headquarters. In every single one of the violations, according to Miller, the placard had been loaned from friends or family members. Some family members or friends may have even been deceased, he said.

The citations could result in fines ranging from $250 to $1,000, up to six months in jail or both, according to the DMV.

“Ignorance of the law is not an excuse,” Miller said.